Recently the construction of two nuclear power plants in US South Carolina was suspended. According to local media, the projects are frozen due to unprofitability. Two more nuclear power plant projects are also likely to be frozen in the state of Georgia. As the scientists note, the peaceful atom is gradually disappearing into the past, giving way to renewable energy sources (RES) — in particular, to solar power stations (SPS). It is expected that by 2050 nuclear power stations will be replaced by SPS everywhere, and such terrible accidents as in Chernobyl in 1986 and in Fukushima in 2011 will never happen again.
Today there are about 130 abandoned nuclear power plants in US. Their places in the market are confidently occupied by SPS. In 2016, the solar energy market in the United States has doubled. And if before 2011, solar panels were most often used for domestic purposes, now the industrialists actively invest in the construction of Solar power stations.
The advantages of RES in comparison with nuclear power plants are recognized even by influential lobbyists of the peaceful nuclear industry. The fact is that in addition to the constant threat of catastrophes of nuclear power plants with subsequent damage to the environment, nuclear power has become too expensive and unprofitable.
Today the United States ranks fifth in the top ten countries in the use of solar energy. Just as the US has become a pioneer in the use of shale oil and gas, they are also leading in terms of the pace of replacing nuclear power plants at SPS.
In US, the largest solar power plants are in the states of Nevada (60 MW), California (250 MW) and Arizona (280 MW).
At present, the closure of nuclear power plants in the United States has become massive. For example, in 2014, the Vermont Yankee was shut down in Wyndham, near Springfield. US operator Entergy has already announced plans to close the Pilgrim nuclear power station in Massachusetts, the Palisades plant on Lake Michigan, the Indian Point nuclear power station, 40 kilometers from New York and the FitzPatrick nuclear power plant on the coast of Ontario.
The **reason for the closure of nuclear power stations **is simple: expensive nuclear energy can not withstand competition with cheap solar energy.
On the one hand, the closure of nuclear power plants is associated with a reduction in staff and the need for waste disposal. But on the other — thanks to SPS will be saved billions of dollars and minimized harm to the environment.
For example, on site and an NPP in the state of Tennessee that was unfinished in 1981, a SPS power station with a capacity of 1 MW is in operation, and its service life is about 30 years.
According to the media, the project to build a nuclear power plant in Tennessee was frozen after the nuclear power station accident at Three Mile Island.
By the way, the accident at the nuclear power plant “Three Mile Island” became the largest accident in the history of the US nuclear power industry. The emergency occurred on March 28, 1979 at the second power unit of the station: leakage of the coolant of the reactor installation. About 50% of the reactor core was melted, and the territory of the nuclear power plant was subjected to significant radioactive contamination. This accident was long before Chernobyl and Fukushima, triggered a surge of anti-nuclear sentiment in American society.
As a result, the authorities were forced to cancel the commissioning of more than 70 previously planned nuclear power stations.
Today, it seems, public concern about the danger of nuclear power plants is gradually weakening, as the world enters the era of RES and SPS. And the significance of this historical process can not be overestimated.
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